Britain a multicultural society
Seaford (2001) asserts that “ an specially and democratic society” ought to function in an available, fair and manner, “ so that later a new stake in the choices which affect them”. (Seaford, 2001 pp. 107) In addition, she poses the question; “ What makes people feel that it is their country? Partly having equal civil and political rights, partly being able to join in the national culture and share aspirations for the future, but also a feeling that their own personal story which of their family is entwined with all the national story. ” (Seaford, 2001 pp. 107) Obviously, place only be achieved by surpassing certain problems that prevent the full implementation of mainstreaming.
Many people would argue that Britain is maybe not only clearly a multicultural society, but also a multiethnic and multifaith society, to display this they point to numerous factors obviously displayed in British culture. The enhancements made on British landscape – Religious symbols such as temples, mosques, synagogues are apparent throughout Britain and promote a “ multifaith” society. This idea of a multifaith society is also apparent in the acceptance and allowances made for religious clothing, such as turbans and headscarves, to be allowed on the job, schools and other public places. The development of food outlets, including Chinese and Indian restaurants and the ‘ obvious’ acceptance of different cultures due to Britain’ s favourite dish being Chicken Tikka Masala, is also a factor of British culture which could be used to argue that Britain is a multicultural society.
British popular culture including films and music also help to promote multiculturism. Films such as “ Bend it like Beckham” and “ Bride and Prejudice” which are dominated by actors from ethnic minorities, often hit the big screens and are very popular in cinemas, which helps to promote ethnic identity and educate people about different ethnic cultures. Another form of British popular culture, which helps to promote multiculturism, is music. The introduction of black music from the Caribbean in the 1970’ s, including the music of Bob Marley began to introduce British visitors to music from different cultures.
This continued throughout the 1980’ s with British black people starting to introduce themselves into the popular music scene, creating a new type of popular music, which still had the basic aspects of their cultural influence behind it. Furthermore, the development of music like the bhangra infusion of sounds – Punjabi songs included with a ‘ western beat’, displayed by famous artists such as Cornershop, Asian Kool and Punjabi MC, helped bring the culture and music of ethnic minority groups into the West. Many of the tracks were recorded especially for English music channels such as The Box and MTV, and having the ‘ western beat’ made it even more appealing to young British people, while still introducing them to and educating them about different cultures.
Most importantly though, is probably the role of TV to exhibit the change in the last 40years and the development of multiculturism. Almost 50 years ago and 70s programmes for example “ love thy neighbour” and “ mind your personal language”, ridiculed and mocked the cultures of ethnic minorities, which can be established simply from the titles of the programmes. However more recently programmes for example “ Goodness Gracious Me”, “ The Kumars” and “ The Real McCoy”, made by Asian dominated casts, has reserved this mockery and turned the jokes on the head, having a go at English for being racist, whilst showing that they really are just like ‘ the rest of us’ whilst they may have a stronger culture than most ‘ white British’ people, which isn’ t necessarily a bad thing.
In short it really is claimed that people in Britain are now allowed to attain their ethnicity and religion and they are allowed to talk / eat / live where and exactly what they want, which ultimately promotes multiculturalism. However, many other people claim that these developments during the last 40years have not promoted multiculturism but have infact increased segregation. They claim that since the 1960’ s people from ethnic minorities have been ‘ clumped together’, for example in Bradford and Birmingham, where there is an extremely large Asian community. This forced segregation and ‘ clumping together’ of ethnic minorities is in itself not only a form or racism but additionally stimulation for it.